New Poll from Institute of Politics at Harvard, Saint Anselm Finds Romney Leading NH Primary Field by 18 Points

Contact: Esten Perez
Phone: (617) 496-4009
Date: October 11, 2011

Cambridge, MA - A new poll by the Institute of Politics (IOP) at Harvard University and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College shows former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney leading the candidate field with 38 percent among likely voters in the New Hampshire Republican presidential primary. Businessman Herman Cain (20%) and U.S. Representative Ron Paul (13%) follow, with all remaining candidates polling at 5 percent or less.
The candidate ballot test appears far from settled; only 10 percent say that they are “definitely” voting for Mitt Romney, 6 percent say the same about Herman Cain -- and only 14 percent report they are “very satisfied” with the field of candidates.
However, likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters appear confident of a Romney win over President Obama, with 72 percent saying Romney would win in a general election match-up with Obama and 20 percent saying the President would win.
"We at the Institutes of Politics at Harvard and Saint Anselm have really enjoyed working together with our students on tracking public opinion leading up to the New Hampshire primary,” said Trey Grayson, Director of Harvard’s Institute of Politics and Neil Levesque, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Institute of Politics. “On the heels of our insightful focus groups with New Hampshire Millennials two weeks ago, our unique collaboration is now providing new, timely data to the media and public on New Hampshire voter perceptions of the 2012 presidential candidate field and key issues of concern in the Granite State.”
"The real significant finding in this data is not so much who the frontrunner is at this point - Governor Romney has been the front runner in this field for a while - but who is NOT in the top tier,” said Patrick Griffin, Senior Fellow at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics. “With Herman Cain showing surprising strength as the ‘Romney Alternative’ and a compressed primary schedule, Governor Perry may be running out of time in New Hampshire. There is a lot more riding on this Tuesday's debate for Romney, Cain and Perry (in that order) today then there was yesterday."
One-in-five (20%) likely Republican primary voters say they have met at least one of the candidates running for President in person (Romney has met the most voters by a margin of more than 3:1).
The poll's 648 telephone interviews (landline and cell phone lines) with likely voters in the New Hampshire Republican primary for President were conducted between Sunday, Oct. 2 and Thursday, Oct. 6, 2011. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.4 percentage points.

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